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Intel has canceled its Meteor Lake CPUs for PCs because of Apple

Like any good soap opera, this has several parts, specifically, one could say that “three pieces of news are better read than one”, because the information comes from several fronts at the same time, and as we intuited, the situation has ended up breaking down in this 2023. Apple has expelled Intel from the PC market for this year thanks to TSMC, having the blues to put the sEsports Extrason the door of “Meteor Lake has been canceled”. How is it possible that those of the bitten apple have achieved such a feat?

Not even AMD has been able to stand up to the blue giant in terms of reserving nodes exclusively for them, but Apple… Apple is something else, it is TSMC’s best customer by far, Intel has just arrived in the “order world” of the Taiwanese, and there is no color or doubt about who to prioritize… And who doesn’t.


Intel has canceled Meteor Lake for PC after a restructuring

As this subject is complex to deal with, once again we will go in chronological order within the events and summarize until we catch up. The development of Meteor Lake was intended for the node Intel 4 made by the blues and the TSMC lithographic process N3 (3 nm) for your new and innovative tGPU, all based on Tiles. But then the pandemic came and then there was no demand, so the TSMC production lines stopped, losses began in the blue team, layoffs, and they had to “pick up the cable” forcibly.

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In December we already talked about the fact that Meteor Lake S, that is, the variant for desktop PCs, could be cancelled, well, today this information is confirmed, but the most serious thing is that the CPUs exist, that is, the desEsports Extrashas been completed and there are even variants.

What has happened then? On the one hand, the desEsports Extraswith the highest number of cores implied a fairly large physical space in the die that, on the other hand, was not going to be used for mid-range models. The only option was to require TSMC its chips at 3 nm to manufacture the tGPU and get it all into an interposer of a similar size to the current one in Alder Lake and Raptor Lake, but it couldn’t be…

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Apple enters the scene and sweeps TSMC’s 3nm


The Taiwanese have stopped almost 30% of the production in their FABs and against all odds, Apple has come to rescue them. As? Well, reserving all the production of TSMC’s first-generation N3 to manufacture the A17 Bionic and the M3 chips, or what is the same, Apple has 100% of the most advanced chips from Taiwan exclusively for 2023.

Logically, it has driven Intel out of the high-end PC market, and Intel has canceled Meteor Lake S as it has no capacity, no performance, and no cost competition with TSMC N3. Therefore, and in view of what has happened, Intel has placed and postponed the orders for the 3nm to the fourth quarter… From 2024! That is, more than a year and a half ahead.

2023 was already KO, now 2024 is at high risk for Intel


So what are you going to do with the MTL-S chips and designs? Well, it has derived them to a variant of the architecture for laptops, specifically, to MTL-Pwhich will have the die of 6+8 Cores with two sides of GPU… But to 5nm and not at 3 nm. These slopes will be GT2 with 128 EU and GT1 with 64 EU.

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This has been possible because a single Tile with CPU+SoC+IO with iGPU GT1 has gone to CPU, IO, SoC and GT”X”, all separated, as we have said, in Tiles, so the work has not been for nothing really, but… How is Intel going to compete in 2024? This year he will stretch the gum with Raptor Lake-Refresh, but the plans for next year are very much up in the air. Maybe Arrow Lake ahead with Intel 20A and target a 5nm tGPU? We will see, but the way to Zen 5 it is leveling out… And in what way, the advantage achieved in these last two years after coming back can end up back at the starting point with AMD on top once again.


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